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Sport in Liverpool

Liverpool is home to the Premier League football clubs Everton and Liverpool F.C. The city of Liverpool is the only one in England to have staged top division football every single season since the formation of the Football League in 1888, and both of the city’s clubs play in high-capacity stadiums. Both Everton and Liverpool have played in the Premier League for every season since its inception in 1992. Everton are the older of Liverpool’s two professional football clubs. They were founded in 1878 and have played at Goodison Park since 1892, when they relocated from the Anfield stadium that was taken over by the new Liverpool club. Everton have been league champions nine times, FA Cup winners five times and European Cup Winners’ Cup winners once. Their most successful managers were Harry Catterick and Howard Kendall. Many high profile players have worn the Everton shirt. These include Dixie Dean (who scored a record 60 goals in a single league season), Tommy Lawton, Brian Labone, Ray Wilson, Alan Ball (who both featured in England’s World Cup winning side of 1966), Neville Southall, Andy Gray, Gary Lineker, Andrei Kanchelskis, Dave Watson and Wayne Rooney.

Liverpool F.C. are one of the most successful teams in English football, having won 18 league titles, seven FA Cups, seven League Cups, five European Cups and three UEFA Cups. They formed in 1892 and have spent their entire history at the Anfield stadium which they occupied on their formation; it had previously been home to Everton. Liverpool have been in the top flight of English football continuously since 1962 and have been managed by Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan, Kenny Dalglish(who also played for the club and for a while was player-manager), Gerard Houllier, Rafael Benítez and Roy Hodgson. Famous Liverpool players include Billy Liddell, Ian St. John, Roger Hunt, Ron Yeats, Emlyn Hughes, Kevin Keegan, Ian Rush, Graeme Souness, Robbie Fowler and Steven Gerrard. However, the club also has an association with tragedy; in 1985, rioting on the terraces during the European Cup final at Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium, resulted in the death of 39 spectators (almost all of them Juventus supporters) and led to all English clubs being barred from European competitions for the next five years (with Liverpool having to serve an extra year when all other English clubs were re-admitted). Four years later, 94 Liverpool fans (the toll eventually reached 96) were crushed to death at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield at the FA Cup semi-final. This tragedy led to the Taylor Report which saw standing accommodation banned from all top division stadiums by the mid-1990s.

Horse Racing

Aintree Racecourse is a racecourse in Aintree, Merseyside, England. It was served by Aintree Racecourse railway station until the station closed in the 1960s. The racecourse is probably best known for annually holding the world-famous Grand National steeplechase. The course is home of the Grand National steeplechase, one of the most famous races in the world. Prior to the event being held at Aintree, the race was run in the nearby district of Maghull. Steeplechasing at Aintree was introduced in 1839, though flat racing had taken place there for many years prior to this. It is regarded as the most difficult of all courses to successfully complete, with 16 steeplechase fences including renowned obstacles The Chair, Canal Turn and Becher’s Brook. These are so infamous that even their names strike fear into the most professional of jockeys. All fences bar the water jump are covered with spruce unlike any other course in British National Hunt racing. Four other races take place over the National fences. These are the Topham Chase (formerly known as the John Hughes Trophy Chase) and the Fox Hunters’ Chase at the Grand National meeting, and the Grand Sefton Handicap Chase and Becher Handicap Chase in the November meeting. Within the large National course there is also the smaller Mildmay course containing hurdles and fences. These fences are made of traditional National Hunt material. The National and Mildmay courses use to share the water jump, but the mildmay course no longer jumps the water.

The Grand National

The Grand National (also known as The National) is a world-famous National Hunt horse race which is held annually at Aintree Racecourse, near Liverpool, England. It is a handicap chase run over a distance of four miles and 856 yards (7,242 m), with horses jumping thirty fences over two circuits of Aintree’s National Course. The race has been held at Aintree each year since 1839, with the exception of 1916-1918 during the First World War when it was held at Gatwick Racecourse, 1941-1945 during the Second World War when it was called off, and in 1993 when the race was declared void owing to a false start. It is currently scheduled to take place on a Saturday afternoon in early April. The steeplechase is the centrepiece of a three-day meeting, one of only four run at Aintree in the racing season. It is the most valuable National Hunt event in Britain. The racecourse is triangular in shape and contains sixteen fences, all except The Chair and the Water Jump are jumped twice. The course has a reputation as the ultimate test of horse and jockey, most starters failing to complete the two circuits. Certain fences are famous for their severity, notably Becher’s Brook, The Chair, and the Canal Turn. The National is listed on the Ofcom Code on Sports and Other Listed and Designated Events, ensuring it is broadcast live on free-to-air terrestrial television in the United Kingdom.

Golf

England’s Golf Coast is arguably the finest stretch of championship golf in the world. The region is home to 19 challenging and picturesque courses, including three Royal links courses – Royal Birkdale, Royal Liverpool and Royal Lytham & St Annes – which regularly host the Open Championship